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Mediator Needed Urgently for Education Pay Dispute

Mediator Needed Urgently for Education Pay Dispute

Tuesday 30 Oct 2001 Donna Awatere Huata Press Releases -- Education

The Government and the PPTA must agree on a mediator and a deadline for resolution of pay disputes, ACT Education Spokesman MP Donna Awatere Huata said today.

"A mediator is urgently needed. I am sure both sides could agree to the Commissioner for Children, a University Vice Chancellor or a respected educator for this role. The head of a non-Governmental organisation such as the Womens' Refuge would be ideal.

"While others are relishing the spectacle of Education Minister Trevor Mallard battling with the teachers' union, I think enough is enough. The rights of our children must come first, and that means that both sides are going to have to compromise a little.

"The real cause for this dispute is the fact that teachers are overworked. We need an independent, non-biased person in the middle who can listen to both sides and find common ground. I suspect there is far more common ground than either side is willing to admit.

"Neither the PPTA nor Mr Mallard are in an easy position. New Zealanders have sympathy for both sides. However we are also aware that our kids will suffer if this situation drags on.

"We cannot let the pay dispute remain deadlocked until the end of the school year. After choosing an acceptable mediator, the next priority is to set a timetable for negotiation, compromise and resolution.

"Our children are a pawn in a battle between grown ups. It's time to end the impasse," Mrs Awatere Huata said.

ENDS


For more information visit ACT online at http://www.act.org.nz or contact the ACT Parliamentary Office at act@parliament.govt.nz.

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